Taking Maternity Leave: How to Prepare

It is important to stay in constant communication with your boss. You should discuss your current workload, as well as any projects that will need to be completed in your absence. “Having a discussion about how her boss would like her to transition her work will make for a easy transition on both ends,” says Truitt.

If possible, you may also want to speak with your boss about helping allocate work to another employee or temporary substitute before your leave. If you are able to complete projects that you are currently working on and if you can create a detailed plan for the temp while you are gone, the transition will be easier.

Preparing for maternity leave

Plan your return

Before you even go on leave, you should have an idea of how long you will be taking off and if you will be coming back full time or part time initially. “Under extenuating circumstances where the decision is made during leave, the woman should discuss her wishes with her boss as soon as possible,” says Truitt.

Prepare for working again

Check with your employer to find out if they require a medical clearance upon your return. Truitt recommends asking your employer about a phase back plan. “The phase-back approach allows the employee to return to their regular schedule gradually as they get used to being away from the baby and readjusting to working full time.”

Truitt also explains it can be hard to mentally prepare yourself to return to work. She says, “You have to trust that you have chosen the right person to care for your little blessing and that they will be fine without you around. It is typical for new moms to feel guilty and sad leaving their children to go back to work. Children are resilient, and believe it or not, it is the best part of your day rushing to get home to them after being apart.”

The most important factor is to keep the line of communication open with your boss, so he or she is kept informed, which will make the transition easier on you both.

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